The best hotel in the world
Superb accomodation, great bar, wonderful breakfast, amazing winelist, dinner rather pricy and not the best - the restaurant staff thought that the sorbet was a dessert and gave us huge bowls of it , in great surprise when we ordered it between our starter and main. Free ice-creams, ice cold flannels and fruit kebabs delivered around the pool.
Southern Sun Hotels
A collection of the finest luxury hotels and resorts in the southern hemisphere and rivaling the best in the world, Southern Sun Inter-Continental Hotels & Resorts offer travelers service excellence, personal attention, genuine luxury and haute cuisine. There are four luxury Southern Sun Inter-Continental hotels in South Africa:
Umhlanga, north of Durban:Beverly Hills Sun Inter-Continental
Sandton, Johannesburg:Sandton Sun & Towers Inter-Continental
Fourways, Johannesburg:Palazzo Inter-Continental at Montecasino
Johannesburg International Airport: Airport Sun Inter-Continental
The Southern Sun Inter-Continental Resorts are:
Kruger National Park: Malelane Sun Inter-Continental Resort
Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe: Elephant Hills Inter-Continental
Kyalami - South Africa (WARNING! GRAPHIC!)
Kyalami means “my home” in Zulu and for more than 30 years the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit has been the home of South African motor racing. The circuit was opened in December 1961 and apart from it’s role in domestic motor sport, has hosted World Championship Grand Prix and Sports Car events, Grand Prix Motorcycle races and international events for Porsche Turbo World Cup and Super Touring Cars. In March 1975, Jody Scheckter won the South African Grand Prix, thus becoming the second South African driver to win a Grand Prix. The first win was by Buller Meyer who won the second South African Grand Prix in 1938. Kyalami was remodeled in 1988, and again in 1992 when the current pit facility and AA Kyalami Exhibition and Conference Centre was built.
Length 2.550 Miles // 4.104 km
Address AA Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit
Allandale Road (R561)
Telephone +27 (0)11 4662800
What was originally an excellent circuit with a long straight leading into the difficult, but quick, Crowthorne Corner, has been seriously neutered over recent years. Opened in 1961 Kyalami had to wait until 1967 before hosting the South African Grand Prix in 1967. The track remained in use until political problems with the former apartheid regime forced F1 to look elsewhere after 1985.
Like so many of the great circuits Kyalami had a long pit straight preceded by a fast entry corner. With plenty of changes in elevation the straight fed into the tricky first corner, Crowthorne. From there it was a short blast into the Barbecue-Jukskei section regarded as one of the best bits of tarmac in the world.
The first race staged here was won by Pedro Rodriguez, although local boy John Love nearly stole the show in his private Brabham. In 1970 Jack Brabham scored the final win of his 15 year career, while a year later Mario Andretti scored his first Grand Prix victory.
Twice during the 1970s the track was the scene of tragedy and both incidents involved the Shadow team. In 1974 Peter Revson was killed during pre-race testing, while in 1977 Welshman Tom Pryce lost his life after hitting a marshal who crossed the track during the race.
In 1978 the Swedish superstar Ronnie Peterson fought his way to victory with Patrick Depailler while a year later Gilles Villeneuve put in a fine wet weather driver to defeat local hero Jody Scheckter. The 1982 race is best remembered for a strike by the drivers, although Prost recovery drive to victory after a puncture deserves recognition. In 1983 the race moved to the end of the season and provided the setting for a showdown between Prost and Piquet. The Brazilian only finished third but it was enough to clinch his second title. Prost again featured heavily in 1984 after starting from the back of the grid in the spare car. By the end of the race he was second behind team-mate Lauda. A year later Mansell scored his second GP victory just a few weeks after taking his first at Brands Hatch.
In the years between 1985 and the return of Grand Prix racing in 1992 the circuit underwent some major changes. The first 'new race' here was won by Mansell in what was a processional affair. A second visit took place in 1993 but it was clear that the track was rather unpopular with the drivers. Overtaking was virtually impossible on the new track resulting in processional racing of the kind usually restricted to track like Hungary and Monaco. Kyalami (the word means 'my house' in the local Sesotro language) has been suggested a venue for the future but with pressure on F1 to move into Asia a South African race may not make it back to the calender
"World Championship F1 Races"
Year Winner Car
1967 South African Grand Prix Pedro Rodriguez Cooper T81
1968 South African Grand Prix Jim Clark Lotus 49
1969 South African Grand Prix Jackie Stewart Matra MS10
1970 South African Grand Prix Jack Brabham Brabham BT33
1971 South African Grand Prix Mario Andretti Ferrari 312B
1972 South African Grand Prix Denny Hulme McLaren M19A
1973 South African Grand Prix Jackie Stewart Tyrrell 006
1974 Lucky Strike South African Grand Prix Carlos Reutemann Brabham BT44
1975 Lucky Strike South African Grand Prix Jody Scheckter Tyrrell 007
1976 Citizen Grand Prix of South Africa Niki Lauda Ferrari 312T
1977 Citizen Grand Prix of South Africa Niki Lauda Ferrari 312T2
1978 Citizen Grand Prix of South Africa Ronnie Peterson Lotus 78
1979 Simba South African Grand Prix Gilles Villeneuve Ferrari 312T4
1980 Nashua South African Grand Prix Rene Arnoux Renault RE20B
1982 Quindrink-Pointerware Grand Prix of South Africa Alain Prost Renault RE30B
1983 Southern Sun Hotels Grand Prix of South Africa Riccardo Patrese Brabham BT52B
1984 National Panasonic Grand Prix of South Africa Niki Lauda McLaren MP4-2
1985 Southern Sun Hotels Grand Prix of South Africa Nigel Mansell Williams FW10
1992 Yellow Pages South African Grand Prix Nigel Mansell Williams FW14B
1993 Panasonic South African Grand Prix Alain Prost Williams FW15C
"Kyalami - A bit of racing history"
Not only the occasion of Guy Tunmer's single World Championship appearance, the 1975 South African GP provided the last showcase for the hosting country's local heroes, of which many took part in its sixties and early-seventies editions.
With almost no drivers venturing abroad and a flourishing domestic F1 series fought out on the tracks of Kyalami, Killarney, East London and Goldfields, South Africa has been a - perhaps unwilling - advocate of the local hero theory. For 1976, however, the country's premier single-seater championship was to be run under Formula Atlantic regulations, which had hitherto been the nation's second-division championship, adjacent to its Springbok sportscar series. This decision made an abrupt end to numerous local heroes and local outfits doing their home GP as part of their national drivers championship. Until then the eligible F1 material they used included Coopers, Brabhams, Tyrrells and McLarens, and the ones to make most out of them were John Love and Dave Charlton, bitter rivals in the South African F1/FA series Love won six times before Charlton took over his mantle, both going on to win more F1 races than Alain Prost...
Love and Charlton were also the only ones of a South African generation including Serrurier, Tingle, De Klerk, Van Rooyen, Pretorious, Keizan and Tunmer to have competed abroad for regular F1 teams before the Scheckter brothers put a resolute end to South Africa's splendid isolation. John Love might even have won a World Championship GP if not for a late refuelling stop for his self-entered Cooper in the Kyalami race on January 2, 1967. Thus the astonished home crowd missed what would have been a spectacular victory. A few years on, Charlton would do considerably worse in his two outings for Team Lotus, racing a 72D he was later to campaign in cooperation with Aldo Scribante, not only at home but also in several European GPs. By then, with the growing professionalism among the F1 regulars, the South Africans were nowhere in their second-hand material, merely making up the numbers.
The couleur locale was certainly there in the sixties as well, but back in those days some of the odd South African machinery was capable of upsetting the establishment. From its first edition in 1962 until the 1968 GP the African continent's single World Championship event featured South African specials in the Derrington-Francis mould. There was the Alfa Special of Peter de Klerk and of course we had racer/constructor Doug Serrurier's LDS cars taking the ZAGP grid five years running. The LDSes were derived from Coopers before Serrurier started rebuilding Brabham chassis. The Brabham-based LDS for Rhodesian Sam Tingle brought on the first international appearance of Team Gunston, which went on to form the core of the domestic F1 scene together with Aldo Scribante, Otelle Nucci, Alex Blignaut and Team Lawson. Joining Tingle in the Gunston line-up was team founder John Love, who saw Peter de Klerk and Jackie Pretorius come by as team mates in consecutive years and was to drive for the team until his retirement in 1972, this after being soundly thrashed by Charlton's newly-acquired 72D.
Ironically, Gunston went the 72 route itself but only then when the design was thoroughly outdated. For 1974, it bought an E-spec 72 to replace the Formula A Chevron in which Ian Scheckter had unsuccessfully tried to prevent Dave Charlton from taking back-to-back South African championships. The elder Scheckter made his debut with the car in the 1974 GP, the same car taken over by Eddie Keizan, who had been running Blignaut's Tyrrell for the past couple of seasons.
Keizan's team mate in a second 72E was to be Guy Tunmer. Essentially an amateur racer, Tunmer had spent his early career in saloons before moving up to the Springbok series in 1973, winning the Luanda 6 Hours in a 2-litre Lola.
Concurrently he ran an ex-Peterson March 712 F2 machine in the B class of the local F1 series. For 1974, he stepped up to the domestic F Atlantic championship after acquiring a Chevron.
Guy utterly dominated the season, taking 9 poles and 9 wins from 9 starts! This of course attracted the attention of top-line team Gunston, which took Tunmer on to partner Keizan in its two-car 72E team contesting the last South African championship to be run to F1 regulations. As part of a tradition about to be buried, Team Gunston also entered the South African GP, for which the more experienced Keizan qualified in 22nd, with Tunmer lining up 25th. Also part of the South African contingent were Ian Scheckter, who had taken over Keizan's Tyrrell and Charlton, who again was ahead of the domestic competition with the M23 he had acquired during 1974.
In the race, Guy Tunmer acquitted himself well, passing both Keizan and works Lotus driver Ickx, eventually finishing 11th, just behind Ronnie Peterson in the other works 72E. This of course highlighted the shortcomings of the ageing 72 but splitting the works cars was quite a performance nonetheless.
So when the F1 circus reached Barcelona the South African was offered a Brabham BT44B ride by Bernie Ecclestone, who was suddenly short on drivers, all the GPDA members having announced general strike because of the alleged poor safety standards at Montjuich Park. As Tunmer was not a member of the GPDA he accepted the drive greedily. The overjoyed South African rushed back to his hotel to get his helmet and overalls but by the time he returned to the paddock the strike was over!
For poor Guy this meant the 1975 South African GP would remain his only World Championship F1 race. On July 5 that same year Tunmer provided himself with small consolation by winning an F1 race all the same, taking the False Bay 100 at Killarney, round of the South African championship. It was probably the 72's last victory as well.
The following season Tunmer took out his front-running Atlantic Chevron B43 again which was now eligible for top honours. Initially he ran well but during the year his focus gradually shifted toward running his own business of training and development for motor industry clients. Guy retired soon after.
"The tragedy of Tom Pryce"
Name: Tom Pryce
Nationality: Great Britain
Date of birth: June 11, 1949 - Ruthin
Date of death: March 5, 1977 - Kyalami
Talented contemporary of Tony Brise, this gentle son of a Welsh policeman won the 1975 Brands Hatch Race of Champions in a Shadow DN5 on the circuit where he'd first made his name driving a Formula Ford car from the local racing school. In 1974 Tom's entry for the Monaco GP in the also-ran Token Formula 1 car was turned down due to his lack of experience - so he entered the Formula 3 supporting race and ran away with that. Soon he was promoted to the Shadow squad and qualified on pole for the following year's British GP at Silverstone, although Grand Prix success eluded him. This naturally gifted young man was killed during the 1977 South African Grand Prix in one of the most bizarre of all motor racing accidents: a marshall, who was crossing the circuit, was hit by Pryce's car, and he was killed when the man's fire extinghuiher hit him on the head!
There was a six week gap between the Brazilian and South African GPs but little had changed in the F1 field in that period. Ian Scheckter had broken his ankle in a Formula Atlantic race in South Africa and so Hans Stuck took his place at March. Fittipaldi was back down to one car again but there were two new teams both using old March 761s: BS Fabrications entered a Chesterfield-sponsored car for Brett Lunger while F&S Properties had bought a car for Boy Hayje and this was being run by RAM Racing.
Qualifying resulted in James Hunt taking his third consecutive pole position in his McLaren while Carlos Pace put the new Brabham-Alfa Romeo BT45B second on the grid. Then came Niki Lauda's Ferrari, Patrick Depailler's Tyrrell, Jody Scheckter in the Wolf and Mario Andretti in the Lotus. Seventh on the grid was Ronnie Peterson (Tyrrell) with Carlos Reutemann (Ferrari) eighth, Emerson Fittipaldi (Fittipaldi) ninth and Gunner Nilsson (Lotus) 10th.
At the start Pace had too much wheelspin and so Hunt went off into the lead with Lauda, Scheckter and Depailler behind him. Pace slotted in ahead of Mass and Andretti. In the early laps Hunt and Lauda ran nose-to-tail but at the start of the seventh lap the Austrian took the lead and gradually began to get away. Hunt dropped back and came under pressure from Scheckter. On the 18th lap Scheckter took the position.
At the back of the field Renzo Zorzi's Shadow stopped at the side of the track at the end of lap 21 with a split fuel pipe. There was a small fire and two marshals ran across the track, thinking that no-one was coming, despite the fact that they were on the wrong side of a blind brow. Stuck and Pryce arrived, almost side-by-side. Pryce hit the second marshal, who was carrying a fire extinguisher. The man (who was killed instantly) was thrown into the air but the extinguisher hit Pryce on the head, killing him instantly. The Shadow continued down the straight, moving gradually to the right and Laffite, who was unsure what was going on, moved alongside as the two cars approached Crowthorne. The Shadow glanced off the barriers and went straight into the Ligier. Fortunately Laffite was unhurt.
The race went on but the only change at the front came on lap 67 when Hunt slipped back to fourth place behind Depailler. Lauda won but for most of the race had been watching as gauges as part of Pryce's rollbar had become lodged in Lauda's water radiator and the temperatures were rising slowly as the race went on.
"A lap with me around Kyalami"
I really like Kyalami, it's old school and a bit bumpy and the car is going to to be jumping around.
The car isn't going to be perfect; you've just got to get on with it and drive it. That together with the high altitude makes the car feel a bit slow.
On a flying lap, I exit the last turn in first gear and the rear spins up a little, then it's up through the gears along the Vodacom Straight all the way up to fifth. There's a right turn - really just a little kink - but it feels like a turn and I slip off the throttle for it just a touch and drop down to fourth gear for the drive up to Telkom. You've got to be a bit careful because the back end can come round a little if you're not concentrating.Up to Nashua, braking for the kink just before and watching out because the car drifts a little because of the hard braking. For Nashua, you've got to be in the right place to get a good drive and then good speed out of the turn and along the Nashua Straight.
The approach to Nashua is a bit blind, but not bad. Exit onto the straight and then towards Goodyear Sweep probably in third gear. There are a few lines through it and I still haven't figured out which is the best. Goodyear Sweep can be fourth gear before braking hard for the left-hand Goodyear Corner, which I normally take in second. It's as bumpy as hell and the car wants to come round on you. You have got to try and not get in to fast.
Thecar spins up a lot on the exit! Down to second maybe and it's quite tight and bumpy before heading down and braking hard for the Ford Esses. The Esses are a crucial part of the track; maybe the most important part. The track is beginning to go downhill and the front end wants to drift away, it's important not to get in to hot because if you do you will run wide and miss the apex - especially for the right part of the Esses. The front can get kinda light, so you have got to watch out.The first part feels tall and the second part needs squaring off.
This part of the track is the key to making a quick lap as you can make up or loose time here. Probably third for the Esses and stay there all the way up Ford Hill to Wesbank. The approach to Wesbank is steeper than it looks and you have to more or less brake and change gear before you actually see the corner! It's a corner that takes time to learn, but rewards you if you get it right. Basically you just pick a point and go! It's quite a good place to overtake, but it can be a bit difficult. I brake hard for Wesbank and take it in second gear. It's a bit bumpy going in, but the biggest problem is the exit. You really want to square it off.
The rear really spins on the exit, so it's a great place for the spectators as the rear lights up and slips out wide. For me the track is two sections, the first part is from the start to Wesbank and the second part is from Wesbank to the end. It's easy to rush things after Wesbank, but if you do that it upsets the sequence. The run down the Caltex Mine Shaft and the Halvoline Sweep afterwards is probably the fastest part of the track. Then down to the Darkdog Bowl, where the front and rear try to drift as you're braking hard for the corner. I take the Bowl in second gear. It's a corner where, if you don't have the right tyre and compound combination, you can get spat off!
Exit into second and then into third just for a bit before going back down to second for the chicane which is now called Yokohama Kink. As soon as I get the car through and back on to the left side I accelerate hard in second gear before braking hard for the last corner. I'm in first for this corner and I come in as wide as I can so that I can get a really good drive out and on to the Vodacom Straight. If you are leading exiting Yokohama, it's hard for anybody to pass you on the last turn. If you've the right line, then it's going to take a do-or-die effort to get past and it's probably going to end in tears. Out of the last turn and then up through the gears along Vodacom all the way to the chequered flag.